NASHVILLE, Ind. — FTR Associates says another slow month for Class 8 truck orders in May, means OEMs may have to slow their build rates.
Preliminary data from FTR shows Class 8 orders of 17,650 units in May, up 5% from a weak April but down 24% compared to the same month last year.
The annualized order numbers for the past three-month period shows a forecast of 216,700 units. When measured over the December through February period, orders were on pace to reach 308,000 units on an annualized rate.
“The net orders for May were in line with our modest expectations,” said Eric Starks, president of FTR. “Unfortunately, it is well below where many in the industry were expecting to be at this point in time in the recovery. The ongoing weakness is putting additional pressure on the OEMs to lower their build rates over the next several months. With orders hovering near 17,000 units per month and production near 25,000 units per month, it is clear there is a disconnect. A dramatic increase in order activity is needed in order for the OEMs to continue production at their current pace. Over the next few months we expect orders to remain near current levels, as the summer is traditionally a slower time of the year for order activity. It is important to note that even with the recent slowing in order activity, the levels are still relatively healthy for the industry.”
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